SMEs more likely to suffer cyber attacks than larger firms, study suggests

New official research suggests that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are more likely to encounter a cyber attack or data breach than larger firms and corporates.

According to a Government survey of UK businesses of all shapes and sizes, just under half of British businesses suffered at least one cyber security breach last year.

Of those that were affected, 66 per cent were SMEs, while only 41 per cent were larger companies and corporates.

The far-reaching survey found that many businesses have begun investing more time and money in improving their cyber security over the past year. However, threats are still at large and smaller firms appear to be more at risk than their larger counterparts.

According to the report, 58 per cent of UK businesses have sought information or advice about cyber security in the past year by pinning down external consultants and IT experts.

Meanwhile, 87 per cent of firms have spent money on data protection and cyber security, in part to ensure compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Under the GDPR, businesses can potentially be fined up to €20 million or four per cent of annual turnover, whichever is higher, for the most serious data breaches.